From VIP entrances in Versace to service entrances in my apron

Art In The Streets

May 3, 2011

If you are in, or can get to LA in the next few months do NOT miss this massive and magnificent exhibition at the Geffen Comtemporary at MOCA, April 17th – August 8th, 2011. My jaw literally dropped in awe, and Tatjana got a second dose of her mother’s inner child in one week.


 Tatjana arriving at Art In The Streets by bus


Considering it took 45 minutes circling for a parking space, and a steep climb up a few blocks in the hot midday sun – only to find out we were at the wrong MOCA – the correct one being a mile away, it was a bumpy start to our sojourn. Things started looking up when we were informed we could hop a bus to Little Tokyo (our virgin journey on LA mass transit), therefore an adventure.


 Keith Haring


The humor was not lost on me, although my eyes did well up a bit, when the car my friend Keith Haringpainted happened to be one of the very first pieces I saw as I entered the main hall. I had an overwhelming desire to reach out and touch his signature as if it would bring him back, but I could feel the numerous security guards’ watchful eyes upon me, so I behaved myself.


 Kenny Scharf


Then I turned the corner to find Kenny Scharf’s car (one of Keith’s closest friends) next to it, I felt the corners of my mouth curl into a grin again. His bright, triumphant pieces were everywhere. I messaged him as soon as I got home to tell him how great it was to be reminded of how much I love his work, and he promptly messaged back “Thank you Julie Anne! I loved the show too, and am happy to be a part of it…”


Barry McGee


Apart from the artists I was already well familiar with from back in the day, I was elated to see the work of newer artists I didn’t know much about. Its been a long time since I have felt this exhilarated by a show.




Tatjana pulled me through some loose canvas into a room I would have missed entirely. My breath was taken away by this enormous paper portrait cutout with light shining from within – a truly spectacular art form I’d never seen before. I bought the catalogue just to learn more about the artist, Swoon, and her background.


Dash Snow/IRAK


I’ll let you in on a secret, I play this little game in my head that I have infinite funds at my disposal, and all of the art is for sale. “Ooooh I think I’ll have that one,” or “not really my cuppa, think I’ll pass on that one.” Tatjana commented “Mom, you’re like a kid let loose in a candy store!” If only she knew.


Street Market -Todd James, Barry McGee, and Stephen Powers


In my imaginary art collector’s world, I’m usually quite content to leave it all in the museum for everyone to enjoy. However, I fell in love with this Lichtensteinesque painting by Crash below. I could visualize exactly where it would live in my home.




Did you know this is the first time Banksy has ever shown in a museum? The first time I heard of him,Tatjana had asked Nick for one of his paintings as her high school graduation gift. I think she is still waiting on that one, but you can’t fault the kid – she has got excellent taste!




I’d have to sell an awful lot of premium memberships to afford that one! Wish we could have done a tour together of the graffiti he did around town leading up to the Oscars, but we did spot a few Shepard Fairey’s


Shepard Fairey


on the sides of buildings on our route home, although French street artist, Invader, holds the dubious honor of being the first of the exhibited artists to be busted by LAPD for letting his art spill out onto the streets.


Tatjana wants this room in her flat


Tatjana wants this whole room to spill directly into her London flat, and when I bumped into a couple taggers spraying a wall in my neighborhood as I walked Daisy this afternoon, I seriously considered inviting them home to paint my garden wall. I decided to make my Asian Graffiti Carrot Salad instead. BTW, I would love to know which piece is your favorite – either in my post, or at the show if you can attend?


 Asian Graffiti Carrot Salad






1/4 cup rice vinegar
1 tablespoon peanut butter
2 teaspoons honey
1 teaspoon Chinese mustard
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes
2 cups carrots, shredded
1 1/2 cups Napa cabbage, shredded
1/2 cup red cabbage, shredded
1/4 cup golden raisins
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1/4 cup sunflower seeds




1). In a large bowl, mix the rice vinegar, peanut butter, honey, Chinese Mustard, soy sauce, sesame oil, and red chili flakes with a whisk until well incorporated. Season to taste.


2). Add shredded carrots, both cabbages, raisins, almonds, and sunflower seeds. Season to taste, and chill.




Stir well before serving, and serve cold with my Turkey-Jasmine Turkey Burgers, and Five Spice Sweet Potato Oven Fries; or as a side for Crispy-Ginger Chicken Lettuce Wraps.

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